Moussa Dembele completes Atletico Madrid loan as Slimani heads to Lyon

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Moussa Dembele completes Atletico Madrid loan transfer to Lyon until end of season as Islam Slimani ends Leicester nightmare to replace him on 18-month contract

  • Moussa Dembele signed six-month loan deal with Atletico Madrid
  • Islam Slimani finally sealed Leicester’s exit to take his place at Lyon
  • Dembele replaces Diego Costa, who left Atleti six months at the start of December

Moussa Dembele has sealed his six-month loan transfer to Atletico Madrid, with Islam Slimani arriving at Lyon to take his place.

Dembele arrives at the La Liga champions as a direct replacement for Diego Costa, who left the Spanish giants last month, with an option to buy £ 29.6million this summer.

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The 24-year-old has enjoyed two prolific seasons in goal in France following his arrival from Celtic in 2018.

Diego Simeone was in desperate need of a new striker

Moussa Dembele (left) has completed his transfer to Atletico Madrid from Diego Simeone

Islam Slimani has arrived in Lyon on an 18-month deal to take Dembele's place

Islam Slimani has arrived in Lyon on an 18-month deal to take Dembele’s place

He leaves after scoring 45 times in 108 appearances, including a brace in last season’s Champions League quarter-final victory over Manchester City.

Algeria international Slimani in turn ended his miserable spell at Leicester by signing an 18-month contract with the leaders of Ligue 1.

Slimani made the last of just 48 appearances in four and a half years at the Foxes in a 1-0 loss to Aston Villa last October.

The 32-year-old signed for £ 28million in August 2016 but has never really been settled and has been sent on loan in each of the past three seasons.

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Atletico boss Diego Simeone confirmed this week that the club are getting closer to signing Lyon striker Dembele.

Slimani ended his Leicester nightmare after just 48 appearances in four and a half years

Slimani ended his Leicester nightmare after just 48 appearances in four and a half years

The need for a replacement for Costa was heightened when he canceled his six-month contract at the club in early December.

“It is still not confirmed, but it is very advanced,” the Atletico coach told reporters.

‘I’m going to turn my head towards the game, that’s what interests me, and when there’s something [on Dembele], if there is anything, I will give an opinion.

Simeone’s comments come after Lyon’s sporting director Juninho revealed the striker came to talk to him about his desire to leave.

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“Moussa came to see me. He thinks it’s time to change teams, that he’s lost some motivation, ”said the Brazilian.

Simeone was looking for a striker to replace Diego Costa, who canceled his contract

Simeone was looking for a striker to replace Diego Costa, who canceled his contract

“It wasn’t something we had planned. I love her so much. Keeping someone who doesn’t really want to maintain the intensity for the next five months – that’s not ideal.

“We are in talks with Atletico, I think Moussa has struck a deal with Atletico.”

Dembele has scored just one Ligue 1 goal this season in 16 top-level appearances in France, following a season in which he has scored 24 in 46 in all competitions.

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